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Euroleague 2010/2011 Preview: Group A

October 19th, 2010 · 1 Comment

Group A of the Euroleague 2010/2011 features on the one hand several teams without any notable prospect but also some of the most talented players of the whole competition. So let’s check who are the guys to follow in this group.

Partizan Belgrade

Of course, the number one prospect to follow this season in the Euroleague is the Czech forward Jan Vesely. After his break-out season that has been crowned by a participation at the Euroleague Final Four in Paris in 2010, it is now the time to confirm for Vesely and show that he has the potential to be a NBA lottery pick in 2011. The athletic 1990 born forward has a tremendous motor and great will. He scores mostly on fast-breaks, offensive rebounds and catch-and-shoot situations. With his excellent size, he needs to improve in the mid-range game out of the dribble and eventually become a bit more physical for the NBA play. Additionally, he can develop into an excellent defender as he has nice lateral speed and a great wingspan that helps him as well to be a tremendous shot blocker. He started well into his Adriatic League season being the most aggressive player of Partizan in terms of received fouls. Additionally, he is also averaging nearly 3 assists per game so far which shows his development in this part of the game. It will depend a lot on Vesely if Partizan can go for another surprising season this year and repeat their tremendous success from 2010.

The years go by and Branislav Djekic is still there and still only 19 years old. The long PF is getting his minutes as a back-up and mainly has a role as defender and rebounder. He does not have the biggest impact on the offensive end despite having an interesting shot but this season could help him to improve his status within the team. However, Djekic started his Adriatic League season quite slowly as he averages only 1ppg so far. With his experience on the Euroleague level, he will probably get more playing time once the big competition has started. The 2m06 tall forward will offer his three-point shot accuracy to the team and he will probably spend a lot of minutes together with Vesely on the court.

The surprise of the season so far for Partizan is the 1989 born guard Dragan Milosavljevic. He is leading the team in the Adriatic League in terms of scoring (15.7ppg at 14/19 2FGs,  3/11 3FGs 10/11 FTs) and gains his first experience on this level. In fact, Milosavljevic arrived this summer at Partizan, where he signed a three-year contract, coming from Radnicki where he averaged 10.2ppg in the Adriatic League. Having never seen him play so far, I can not give you more info on him but I hope to see him play in the next Euroleague games in order to get a better idea what type of player he is.

Bogdan Bogdanovic arrived this summer as well at Partizan coming from KK Zitko. The 1m97 tall wing is able to create his own shot and has an excellent mid-range game. He can play the gaps that the defense gives him with ease and score out of the drive on the perfect jump shot. The question remains how much playing time Bogdanovic will see this season as he has not been on the court with Partizan so far in the first games of the Adriatic League.

Vladimir Lucic is a 2m02 tall forward born in 1989 that saw some limited minutes with Partizan over the last seasons. His role on the team has increased this season as he scored more baskets in the Adriatic League in the first three games than over the last two seasons combined. We will see what he is able to do on Euroleague level in the next weeks.

Caja Laboral Vitoria

The Serbian big guy Dejan Musli has arrived to Vitoria only recently but he had already some impact in the team’s trip to the US. After his last season with FMP Belgrade, where he had some limited playing time in the Adriatic League and the Eurochallenge, the move to a Euroleague team maybe a bit early for him as he will most likely not see a lot of minutes this season as well. However, he is certainly a long-term investment for the Spanish team as Musli has excellent size (2m14), runs the floor better and better and understands the game quite well. The 1991 born player is definitely one of the big men of the future in Europe and a first learning season with Caja Laboral could help him get the necessary boost for the future.

One of the most promising players with Caja Laboral is the 1993 born Brit Devon van Oostrum. He arrived in Spain already last summer and got registered for the Vitoria Euroleague Team for this season. However, it would be a big surprise if he will see regular minutes with the Spanish champion. You can find a lot more information on him right here.

Zalgiris Kaunas

After a year on loan with BC Siauliai, Mindaugas Kuzminskas will now be a full part of the Zalgiris Kaunas rotation. He will bring his athletic game with him and can be a very interesting option coming from the bench to give a scoring boost for the Lithuanian Euroleague team. The NBA Draft Early-Entrant will try to confirm his status as potential NBA player by competing with a stronger team against better oppositin. Being a bit of a tweener playing either the SF or the PF spot, the 1989 born Kuzminskas will most likely have to move full-time on the SF position this season in order to have good impact on the Euroleague level.

Asseco Prokom

Mateusz Kostrzewski is the only 1989 born prospect on the Polish Euroleague team. However, the athletic guard will probably see only garbage time minutes this season.

BC Khimki

No real prospect to follow.

Maccabi Electra Tel Aviv

No real prospect to follow.

1 response so far ↓

  • 1 Boris // Oct 20, 2010 at 8:29 am

    Hi there

    Milosavljevic is probabley one of best “hiden” prospects in Europe. Very athletic player with great drives. Always looking to take advantage of his great first step and solid handeling. Reminds lot on Caja’s San Emiterio.

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